This week has brought change. For some children, they have returned part time to school, for others, they have completed another week of schooling at home. Even across our global borders, change has continued to occur in our social economy.
The pandemic has brought forth a myriad of changes. With change, there are many new, uncertain, and sometimes daunting experiences that we face. It can seem that everything has become overwhelmingly ‘different.’ When we experience this felt difference we can also feel that we have changed and therefore are alone in our situation. Thus, creating a breeding ground for loneliness.
Disneyland, the renowned amusement park in Southern California, boasts a famous ride titled, ‘Its’ a Small World.’ If you’ve even been there once, the boat ride that tours you across the ‘countries,’ leaves the melody imprinted in your mind, on repeat. The song proclaims that, “it’s a world of laughter, a world of tears, it’s a world of hopes and a world of fears… there’s so much that we share that it’s time we’re aware it’s a small world after all.” This message, from a mere ride, beckons us to see the similarities in our world and in that of our neighbours.
In Brene Brown’s work, she encourages a similar recognition when she talks about the courage to truly see one another. She expressed that it takes bravery to vulnerably share life with one another. To share your story communicates to others that they are not alone. “I see you, I have felt these feelings too, and I’m here for you.”
So, this week, my encouragement to you is to reach out. In the midst of your life changes and perceived differences, to instead intentionally connect with others. Although social distancing is still causing a physical distance, you can begin to close the gap on the emotional distance. Be the first one to courageously offer support, to ask for help, and to share your story with someone. Find the connection that comes from truly being seen.
Cynthia Chernoff, School Counsellor
Stanford Medicine: http://ccare.stanford.edu/uncategorized/connectedness-health-the-science-of-social-connection-infographic/
Dr. Brene Brown: https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_experiencing_joy_and_pain_in_a_group_is_so_powerful
Dr. Caroline Leaf: https://drleaf.com/blogs/news/3-mental-self-care-habits-of-the-happiest-people